Two major atmospheric players came together to spawn biblical rainfall totals and disastrous flooding across South Carolina.
"But last week’s much-anticipated Hurricane Joaquin, which at one point was threatening a Mid-Atlantic landfall with all of its storm surge, strong winds and torrential rainfall, tracked well offshore over the weekend. So how could something this devastating have happened without an actual hurricane landfall?
Hurricane Joaquin did play an indirect role in South Carolina’s weekend deluge, but there’s much more to this meteorological story.
As Hurricane Joaquin tracked north, well east of the coast, a separate, non-tropical low pressure system was setting up shop over the Southeast late last week. This system drew in a deep, tropical plume of water vapor off the tropical Atlantic Ocean. At the same time, this upper-level low pressure system tapped into the moist outflow of Hurricane Joaquin."